Tuesday 29 December 2009

Tuesday thoughts . . .

I recently came across these words attributed to that brilliant comedienne Gilda Radner. To me, they seem to sum up perfectly what I like to think of as the delicious ambiguity of life.

"I wanted a perfect ending . . . Now I've learned the hard way that some poems don't rhyme, and some stories don't have a clear beginning, middle and end. Life is about not knowing, having to change, taking the moment, and making the best of it, without knowing what's going to happen next."

I thought those words perfectly described how I feel about life. Life is an adventure. Sometimes you have ups, and sometimes you have downs. The trick is in being able to find joy in the journey and finding peace in the moment. I have found that my faith greatly helps me to be able do that. No, things do not always turn out the way I had planned and sometimes crap happens, but . . . through it all I have been able to trust in a higher power who has a plan for me, and I continue to trust in Him who created me in love. Knowing I have a purpose in being here brings a deeper meaning into my life and into each nook and cranny I experience. To be able to look back and count it all joy, and to look forward with intrigue and great anticipation, is a gift that I have been blessed with, but it is one that I have had to learn to cultivate every step of the way.

In another few days we will be closing the book on the year 2009, and opening the cover on 2010. I cannot wait to see what I will be writing on those fresh new pages! It may be good . . . it may be bad, but whatever it is . . . it will be life, my life . . . and that truly is a blessing from above . . . no matter where the journey should take me.

Yesterday I bagged up the rest of the turkey, and most of the ham and popped it into the freezer to enjoy at a later date. With the ham I kept out I made this most delicious casserole for our supper. We quite simply had the leftover vegetables from Christmas dinner reheated and served up on the side, but a lovely tossed salad would go most deliciously with it. This is fabulous, and quite unconventional!!!

*Scalloped Potatoes with Ham*
Serves 6
Printable Recipe

The addition of sweet potatoes and nutty flavoured Gruyere cheese give an old favourite an unusual twist. We just love this, and it's a great way to use up some
of that holiday ham!

1 medium onion, chopped
1 TBS vegetable oil
3 cloves of garlic, peeled and minced
2 sweet potatoes, peeled and sliced 1/4 inch thick
2 large baking potatoes, peeled and sliced 1/4 inch thick
1/2 cup flour
1/4 tsp black pepper
1 tsp salt
2 cups chopped cooked ham
8 ounces (2 cups)shredded Gruyere cheese, divided
1 3/4 cups whipping cream
2 TBS butter, cut into bits

Pre-heat the oven to 200*C/400*F. Lightly butter a 13 by 9 inch shallow baking dish. Set aside.

Heat the oil in a small skillet and add the onion. Cook, stirring over medium heat until softened. Add the garlic and cook for about half a minute longer, until quite fragrant. Remove from the heat and set aside.

Place the sliced potatos, both sweet and baking, into a large bowl. Toss together with the flour, salt and pepper, to coat. Arrange half of the potatoes in the prepared baking dish. Sprinkle the cooked onion mixture over top. Top with the ham and finally with 1 cup of the cheese. (Save the other 1 cup for a bit later on.) Cover the cheese with the remainder of the potato mixture. Pour the cream evenly over top of all and then dot with the butter. Cover tightly with a sheet of aluminium foil, then place into the heated oven and bake for 50 minutes. Remove from the oven and remove and discard the foil. Sprinkle the remaining cheese over top and return to the oven to bake for a further 20 minutes until the potatoes are fork tender and the cheese is lightly browned. Remove from the oven and allow to sit for 10 to 15 minutes before serving. Delicious!!!

If you'd like to discover what's lurking beneath that snowy mountain of stilton and cream, hop on over to The English Kitchen. It's Holiday Chopped Salad! Perfect for that New Years Eve Buffet.


  1. Good morning Marie,

    I am looking forward to closing the door on this year and enjoying 2010 too. I love scalloped potato too.

    Have a great day,


  2. Another delicious solution to my left-over Christmas ham! Thanks, Marie!

    I love your approach to whatever life may hold...I have to say that I was blessed in the same way...I know that whatever the future holds, all will be well. Life is SO good, and I try to be happy even when things aren't perfect (which they never are!) So glad you agree!

    Thanks for your sweet visit tonight--always makes me so happy to see you've stopped by! You're really just too kind to me....but thank-you for being that way! That's one of the things that makes you so wonderful--you're such a kind soul, and I love you dearly!


    I can't say I ever heard of Gilda Radner but I go along with her life philosophy.

    I think I'll be glad to wave ta-ta to 2009, although when I think about it objectively, it's only this past few weeks that I could've done without!

    love, Angie, xx

  4. My faith too is something that has gotten me over a few really rough spots in my life. It's strange how easy it is to be negative and how hard it is to be joyful instead. It is something I often have to work at. The effort is really beneficial though. Being grateful for what we have is a good place to start. When we are thankful we are also joyful. Scalloped potatoes and ham are always good in my books. I've not ever used that particular kind of cheese though and may have to give it a try. It's nice to do something different now and then.

  5. Without faith we have nothing Marie..God has helped me through much this year,but I have also been very joyful and thankful for the small mercy's.The recepe looks delicious.The weather here is bitter cold and more snow forcast,so I decided to have a nice warm hour on the pooter to do catch up.I hope you and Todd have enjoyed your Christmas.Lets all look forward to a good 2010.Take Care God Bless Kath xx

  6. So true!!! I am learning to seize the moment as I get older, and to try to free up my need to control things....as a mum you get so used to organizing everything and making sure things come out right as much as possible, now that my kids are grown, I'm learning to enjoy what each day brings, and be thankful.

    Lovely pictures and recipe


  8. I'm finally getting things straight at home after getting back. I'm so glad you had a wonderful Christmas! We've been having such a glout of cold and rainy weather--it's terrible! We actually have winter!

  9. I am eating up every word you wrote today. I love "find joy in the journey and peace in the moment." How beautifully said. If we all could do that what a beautiful world it would be.

    When I was younger I sometimes thought life would be so much better...when I graduated from college....when the baby was born....when I finished my masters degree...when I lost weight. Now that I am older and wiser (I hope) I just try to enjoy each day for the blessings it brings. In sickness or health, in both happy or sad times there are always blessings to be found. Little tender mercies sent from God to bless our lives. We can always find them if we look for them.

    Thank you dear for reminding me of that today. I am sitting in Erin's home watching it snow. Little cal is all dressed up and looking sharp. We are going in a minute to have lunch with his birth mom. She wanted to visit with John and me again when Erin and Pat took Cal to see her. I must run but I wanted to say hi to you first.

    I am sending love and lots of warm wishes your way. XOXO Lura

  10. ice post, Marie. I too am excited about closing the door on 2009, and starting a fresh new chapter for 1010.

    Happy New Year to you and your Todd.

  11. i have a great feeling about 2010! its gonna be a good one! :)


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